Superintendent Email Update: June 5
DPS Coronavirus Update
Wednesday, June 3, 2020
I am hopeful that all of us continue to wrestle with the messages that are tumbling out of so many different outlets regarding responses to the most recent killings and injustices toward people of color in our country. These conversations are so very important! Those of us who have the privilege of awakening every day without having to wonder if we will be treated differently because of our skin color need to continue this dialog. It is OK if you feel uncomfortable, because we all do; and we all should. It is even more important to ask questions of each other. Because being curious about the disparities in our collective experiences as Americans will move us toward a better understanding of our nation’s history and each other. These conversations will also help us all better understand the systems supporting these disparate outcomes that have fundamentally been in place since the founding of our country over 400 years ago. We can all learn more. And we can’t remain silent. Seek to understand the perspective of others and be prepared to learn.
I have recently had a wonderful series of conversations with Joseph Borsellino, the Chair of Dedham’s Human Rights Commission. His humanity and ability to see the good in all people is more than matched by his passion for the appreciation, dignity, and rights of every citizen. I am so pleased to learn from his leadership in this capacity for the Dedham Community. Joe shared with me the statement to the Dedham community from the Dedham Human Rights Commission, and I encourage you to read this and think deeply about the depth of the concepts it contains. I look forward to continuing our school district’s partnership with the Dedham Human Rights Commission, and productive movement toward our collective interests of a more just and equitable society for people of color.
I recently learned of a great opportunity promoted by the School Library Journal for kids and families who want to process the recent events around our nation. Award winning children’s author Kwame Alexander, Jason Reynolds, and Jacqueline Woodson have organized a Kit Lit Rally for Black Lives on The Brown Bookshelf Facebook page on Thursday, June 4 at 7 p.m. EDT. There will be two separate 45-minute conversations, one for young people and a second for parents, educators, and librarians. These are being held via Facebook Live and should be informational and educational for children and adults of all ages. This is a great way to learn more and continue dialog around this topic.
All the pieces are in place for the Class of 2020 Vehicle-Based Diploma Ceremony this Saturday, June 6 beginning at 1:00 PM. The event is not open to visitors or friends/family beyond those who will be in vehicles with the individual senior graduates. The entire ceremony will be broadcast live by Dedham TV. If you are able to view the ceremony from withIn Dedham, you can find it on Verizon Channel 40; RCN Channel 3 and Comcast Channel 8. For those outside of Dedham, you may go to dedhamtv.com. Near the top of the home page-- on the right hand side-- there is a large maroon button that says LIVESTREAM. When you click on it, you will be given a choice of our three channels. You should click on the PUBLIC Channel.
The town will also be sponsoring a student celebration parade beginning at 5:00 PM on Saturday, June 6. Vehicles will gather in the parking lot of the Dedham Courthouse, and proceed past all elementary schools in Dedham. A flyer announcing the event and displaying the route can be seen HERE. Thank you to the many parents and community members who have worked hard to pull this together and are sponsoring this event!
All my best,